Today was Evie’s 4 year “Well Child” check up with her pediatrician. I had been absolutely dreading it, knowing that she was due at least 4 of her booster vaccinations. The last time Evie was anywhere near an hypodermic, it took me and two male nurses to pin her down in order to take a blood sample (a Green Card requirement, poor lamb). I’d had a sinking feeling ever since I received the appointment letter, given that every time I had mentioned needing to go to the doctor, her immediate reply was always the same. “I don’t like holes, I don’t want to see the doctor. No more holes!”.
Ugh. I think I’ve now worked myself up into more of a state about this check-up than my dear daughter, but finally bit the bullet and booked us in. I spent the morning wondering how on earth we were going to approach this, and what I would tell her to even get her to walk into the office. In the end though, it was actually surprisingly simple! We left Henry at home with the nanny, and I told her we were going on a little adventure. We just had to run an errand first, then we could do something fun together. She seemed happy enough with this, and spent the journey over there chattering away about her best friend, Peter Pan, and informing me that Peter Pan Pepper was a fabulous name for her new brother or sister. Mmm-hmmm, I’ll add it to the list, Evie.
She was actually so happy showing off in the waiting room, lapping up the compliments on her daffodil crown, and playing hopscotch on the orange and white tiled floor, she never even thought to ask me what we were doing there, bless her naive little soul. We had a little hiccup when the Medical Assistant called us through, and Evie spotted the room where she’d had her last shot – she suddenly wailed “I DON’T WANT HOLES” and started backing away, but a quick reassurance that we just wanted to weigh her and have a little chat (lies, all lies, I’m so sorry sweet girl!) soon calmed her down again. And she was an absolute angel, I was so very proud of her. She answered all the questions asked of her, stood on one leg, endured her blood pressure being taken, and chatted confidently to two different MAs and the pediatrician. When our lovely doctor asked Evie if there was anything that was concerning her that she wanted to talk about, she replied “Well, sometimes, at the end of the day when I go to bed, my legs hurt a little bit. It’s just a little bit, but they hurt right here” (pointing at her shins and ankles). Heart. Melting.
Then came the scary bit. Shudder. And of course, my daughter is nobody’s fool, she spotted that tell-tale tray being brought into the room, and was immediately thrown into meltdown mode. Until it was explained to her that having the vaccines would keep her healthy, and help to keep Mummy and her new baby brother or sister healthy, and that it would be over really really fast, and then we could go to Target and pick up any toy at all that she wanted for being so brave…..then she
calmed down stopped wailing. Honestly, for someone that I knew was so absolutely white-knuckle terrified of what was coming, she was incredible. I hugged her to me, her legs wrapped around my waist and arms around my neck, and held her super tight, while we talked about Elsa and Anna, and the MA went about her sad business. Yes, she screamed and writhed away with each “hole”, but that was it. One scream, and yet another “I don’t LIKE holes!”, and that was it. As soon as it was over, and she had her Frozen sticker in her hands, she was absolutely fine. So fine, in fact, that she was declaring her love for me (when I had been scared she would be furious with me for lying to her about our special adventure!). As we strolled out of there together, hand in hand, I thought my heart would burst when she patted me on the back and said “I love you Mummy, you’re my best friend. You’re my little sweetheart!”.
And that was that. We popped down to Target, as promised, and what did Evie choose as her reward, having been told she could choose any toy she liked? A blimmin’ ten dollar Doc McStuffins doctor’s bag. I kid you not !!!